By Jordan Minns
Nowadays, there is no shortage of fights. Last year, the UfC held hundreds of fights and if you add non UFC fights, it would total in the thousands. Even title fights aren’t so rare anymore, UFC title fights can be seen almost once a month. But there’s a type of fight that does not come so often, fans call for it, promoters try to make it, but rarely are they successful. These fights are super fights, and recently I had the honor to witness one, LIVE. The fight was UFC 156 Aldo (near undefeated featherweight champion & p4p great) vs Edgar (former lightweight champion who some would say still is, referred to as the number p4p fighter in the world by Dana White). Along with the super fight, they had a super card that I’m happy to break down for you.
- Joseph Benavidez vs. Ian McCall
- Prediction: Benavidez by Decision
- Result: Benavidez by Decision
The main card began with the Flyweights, Joseph Benavidez and Ian McCall. The fight was mostly what I expected, fast paced and striking oriented. Like most flyweight fights there wasn’t much damage being done but I definitely enjoyed how technically sound both fighters were. The fight was closer than I thought it would be though, I thought Benavidez would easily outwork his opponent but McCall really showcased his Muay Thai and even managed to steal a round. Solid display by both fighters.
- Demian Maia vs. John Fitch
- Prediction: Fitch by Decision
- Result: Maia by Decision
The next fight was Maia vs Fitch, this fight was not overly exciting but Maia did put on an impressive grappling performance. I thought that Fitch would dominate using his kickboxing and then eventually mix in takedowns but Maia pushed the pace, attaining take down after takedown and staying on Fitch’s back nearly the whole fight. The fight was much like a vintage Royce Gracie match, very little action but far from an intentional lay-&-pray; Maia tried constantly to secure a choke but Fitch’s submission defense insured that he was never in any real trouble. A good win for Maia that will push him further up the welterweight rankings.
- Rashad Evans vs Little Nog
- Prediction: Rashad Evans by Decision
- Result: Little Nog by Decision
By far the worst fight of the night. It was basically fifteen minutes of high-fiving from the fighters, and fifteen minutes of booing from the crowd. Both fighters were extremely passive; the offense, the few times it occurred, was in the form of a faux blitz that did little damage. Little Nog managed to pull out the victory by being slightly more aggressive; he pushed the pace (like how a turtle would push the pace against a slug), blitzed more, and slightly out landed Rashad. It’s a big win for Little Nog, and a terrible loss for Rashad; but honestly neither put on an impressive performance.
- Alistair Overeem vs Bigfoot Silva
- Prediction: Overeem by KO
- Result: Bigfoot by KO
As an Overeem fan I was disappointed but this was still a decent fight and a great knockout. Let me start off by saying, you do not realize how huge these guys are until you see them in person, Bigfoot is gigantic. I, like most people, had Overeem coming out there and using his superior kickboxing to earn an easy first round KO. Instead, we saw Overeem throw no strikes and only wrestle, a strategy that was carrying him to victory for two rounds until he was clipped by a big shot from Bigfoot. Over time, Overeem has been fighting more like a bully combining wrestling body locks with his world class striking; the problem is that as he’s found more success with that he’s moved more toward wrestling and away from his striking. I don’t have a doubt in my mind that Overeem could have gotten that KO, but when fighters get stuck in a particular style that may not suit them then they can expect a loss. What we can learn from the fight, when a kickboxer tries to wrestle a man with unbelievable KO power he will get knocked out. Huge win for Bigfoot that earns him a title shot against Cain, bad loss for Overeem that will put his career in the crossroads.
- Jose Aldo vs Frankie Edgar
- Prediction: Aldo by Decision
- Result: Aldo by Decision
The best fight of the night, Aldo v. Edgar had the crowd on its feet like I’d never seen before. I had Aldo taking the fight, using his leg kicks and superior boxing to earn a decision. The fight turned out a lot different than I thought and was actually a very close fight. Edgar did an amazing job blocking leg kicks and really got into a rhythm in rounds three and four, but Aldo used his boxing, in particular his vicious jab to take rounds one, two, and five. Other han GSP-Koshcheck, I’ve never seen jabs like the ones Aldo through in MMA, from my seat you could clearly see them snap Edgar’s head all the way back. High level boxing, jabs, movement, slams, and a beautiful superman punch off the fence helped to make this match the super fight it was destined to be.
Like I said before, great night of fights and I am very happy I could witness history. It’s nights like UFC 156 that make me happy to be a fan and participate in the sport. If you want to talk MMA follow me on twitter @jm_YoungChe and keep visiting The MMA Zone for more of my articles. Peace, love, & happy fighting!
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